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I'm guessing that most of you don't think much of Detroit, but I'm from the Ann Arbor-area, I'm going to go to the University of Michigan, I've got all of my family and friends in the area, I've got all my sports teams in the area (lol), I love the city of Detroit - and I want to live and work there...and I'd also like to make as lucrative a living as I can there.

I've done a lot of research on hedge funds, private equity, venture capital, investment banking, consulting, and investment management...so, I know a little bit about how much the top execs in those fields make, about their career paths, and about their job responsibilities. But, I still don't know enough about what's available in the Detroit-area, and how salaries there compare to more popular financial hubs (NY, CHI, SF, etc.). I do know that McKinsey's got an office in Detroit, and that Ann Arbor's got a couple of good venture capital firms, but that's about it (I don't come from a 'finance/law/corporate-family,' obviously).

So...here's my question: What are some of the top paying financial jobs (/financial firms) in the greater metro Detroit-area? And how do their salaries compare to other top fields in the area...lawyers, doctors, corporate execs, etc...?

Thanks a ton for any help guys!

Best,

Brady

Little background info - I'm still just a high school senior, I've got a wide-range of interests, and I've got - what I believe to be - a wide range of skills and talents as well. So, I'm still pretty open in terms of career choices. I think that I'm going to start off at the UofM with the intentions of getting into the undergraduate business program (BBA degree). I could probably get into a good MBA program (after getting some work experience) or law school if I did well in that program. I might even hedge my bets a little bit and take some pre-med courses in my first year.

Comments (217)

  • happypantsmcgee's picture

    CFO of Kwame Kilpatrick Murder and Executions LLC.

    If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford

  • Brady Hoke's picture

    alright, i'm gonna go ahead and put an end to this shit right now...

    Detroit is a wonderful and unique place. No where else in the world will you see hot shot executives, local celebrities and regular old construction workers (or whatever) sitting at the same table, and eating the same $2 coney dogs. It's the most laid-back city in the world. It's got big companies, monster buildings, pro teams in all the major sports (along with great, great fans), art galleries, museums, bars, clubs, etc...and no traffic (on the roads or on the sidewalks). There's a relatively thin ring of (very) poor neighborhoods that circles the city - where ignorance and crime exist, but inside of that circle we've got a great city, and outside of that circle we've got some of america's greatest suburbs (there's an annoying group of bums that gather around the stadiums for games...and that's scary to some...but they're harmless). And yes, we've had a long, long, long string of bad political leadership here...and stupid voters...but I think that's sort of on the rebound now. Regardless, it's the perfect city for a certain kind of person. I'd suggest that you actually spend a significant amount of time in the city before talking shit about it (or at least get your information from someone that's actually spent a significant amount of time in the city).

  • In reply to Brady Hoke
    happypantsmcgee's picture

    Brady Hoke wrote:
    alright, i'm gonna go ahead and put an end to this shit right now...

    The city is doing a great job of putting an end to itself without your help thanks.

    I do respect that you defend your hometown though. Props.

    If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford

  • Brady Hoke's picture

    if you're too scared to come here, we don't want you here anyways. now quit ruining my thread with your ignorance (and yes, talking shit about a place you've never even been to is ignorance). i want to get some helpful answers.

  • happypantsmcgee's picture

    I've been there, I'm not scared of Detroit, get over yourself.

    Real answer: There are boutiques in Detroit just like any other city. There also consulting firms that have offices out of Detroit (BCG included if memory serves). There are a few threads where people have posted lists of boutiques by city and region. Those would be a good place to start.

    I am sorry Duke didn't recruit you out of undergrad Mr. Rose.

    If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford

  • Brady Hoke's picture

    illini - comerica's just a commercial bank isn't it? salaries can't be that high, can they? i realize that i could become ceo of the bank and make millions...or maybe ceo of ford. but i also realize that i could win the mega millions lotto. we're talking about very small percentages there.

    happy - how do boutique salaries generally compare across fields? is it the same as major shops (with HF, PE, VC, IB being at the top)? are certain fields more lucrative in certain regions (like, auto consultants perhaps making more than private equity heads in D-Town)?

  • PossumBelly's picture

    Im sure there is some corrupt union (as if there was any other kind) gig that pays well.

    Or perhaps a local credit union has an affirmative action program for white people.

    Seriously, you're already off to a bad start by starting your search with "highest paying" as criteria 1, though that puts you in good company with the other youngins on here. Find something you want to do, then worry about what it pays. Frankly, you don't know shit at 18 (and neither did I...or 22 for that matter)....nor should you. Have fun, do well in school, find something that interests you...there is PLENTY of time to worry about a career.

  • In reply to PossumBelly
    Brady Hoke's picture

    Cartwright wrote:
    Im sure there is some corrupt union (as if there was any other kind) gig that pays well.

    Or perhaps a local credit union has an affirmative action program for white people.

    Seriously, you're already off to a bad start by starting your search with "highest paying" as criteria 1, though that puts you in good company with the other youngins on here. Find something you want to do, then worry about what it pays. Frankly, you don't know shit at 18 (and neither did I...or 22 for that matter)....nor should you. Have fun, do well in school, find something that interests you...there is PLENTY of time to worry about a career.

    Cartwright - I appreciate, and agree with that advice. I suppose that I should have been more clear in the original post. I'm really talking more about places I'd like to intern at over the summers...as opposed to long-term career choices...at this point. I figured I'd start with some of the higher-paying options. See if I like them first, lol.

  • In reply to SAC
    Brady Hoke's picture

    <a href="http://www.wallstreetoasis.com/company/sac-capital" rel="nofollow">SAC</a> wrote:
    There's a PE shop in Birmingham called Valstone Partners that recruits for internships all the time at Ross, I interviewed with them once. You might want to reach out to them prior to your sophomore summer and ask if you can help.
    As far as pay goes, I couldn't give you an accurate figure.

    SAC - Thanks for the source. What do PE shops in the metro detroit area do, for the most part? Buy small auto manufacturing companies? I guess that there are also some pharmaceutical and bio-tech (and maybe even some alternative energy) companies in Ann Arbor. And come on...no idea how their salaries compare to other jobs in the area? I should've mentioned that I'm cool with very, very broad estimates.

  • In reply to Brady Hoke
    alexpasch's picture

    Brady Hoke wrote:
    happypantsmcgee wrote:
    I've been there, I'm not scared of Detroit, get over yourself.

    I almost forgot to mention the very best part about living in detroit...all the pussies and ignorant yuppies have been scared away. all that's left is real, simple and tough people.

    (and then a bunch of garbage in the garbage areas, but only garbage goes there).

    I don't know if your desire to live with "real, simple, and tough" people is concordant with your desire to have the "highest paying" job.

    Consultant to a Fortune 50 Company

  • In reply to alexpasch
    Brady Hoke's picture

    Quote:
    I don't know if your desire to live with "real, simple, and tough" people is concordant with your desire to have the "highest paying" job.

    I don't really care what the bottom-line salary is...compared to NY, CHI, SF, whatever, etc. I just want to make the most that I can doing something that appeals to me in the city of Detroit.

    ...btw...a little bit of money goes a long way here. I've even got some friends - high school friends! - that (along with some help from their parents) have BOUGHT HOUSES in Detroit with money from summer jobs. and i'm talking about houses in decent neighborhoods, too.

  • In reply to Brady Hoke
    SAC's picture

    Brady Hoke wrote:
    <a href="http://www.wallstreetoasis.com/company/sac-capital" rel="nofollow">SAC</a> wrote:
    There's a PE shop in Birmingham called Valstone Partners that recruits for internships all the time at Ross, I interviewed with them once. You might want to reach out to them prior to your sophomore summer and ask if you can help.
    As far as pay goes, I couldn't give you an accurate figure.

    SAC - Thanks for the source. What do PE shops in the metro detroit area do, for the most part? Buy small auto manufacturing companies? I guess that there are also some pharmaceutical and bio-tech (and maybe even some alternative energy) companies in Ann Arbor. And come on...no idea how their salaries compare to other jobs in the area? I should've mentioned that I'm cool with very, very broad estimates.

    The ones I know of are involved in RE and on the transportation side. I also know Bill Ford's PE/VC firm focuses on transportation technologies: http://www.fontinalispartners.com, and they also recruit at Ross.

    As far as salaries, the larger banks and consulting firms will have similar starting salaries across the board, maybe a slight haircut to NY, so we're talking $60K starting ?

  • In reply to Brady Hoke
    Midas Mulligan Magoo's picture

    Brady Hoke wrote:
    alright, i'm gonna go ahead and put an end to this shit right now...

    Detroit is a wonderful and unique place. No where else in the world will you see hot shot executives, local celebrities and regular old construction workers (or whatever) sitting at the same table, and eating the same $2 coney dogs. It's the most laid-back city in the world. It's got big companies, monster buildings, pro teams in all the major sports (along with great, great fans), art galleries, museums, bars, clubs, etc...and no traffic (on the roads or on the sidewalks). There's a relatively thin ring of (very) poor neighborhoods that circles the city - where ignorance and crime exist, but inside of that circle we've got a great city, and outside of that circle we've got some of america's greatest suburbs (there's an annoying group of bums that gather around the stadiums for games...and that's scary to some...but they're harmless). And yes, we've had a long, long, long string of bad political leadership here...and stupid voters...but I think that's sort of on the rebound now. Regardless, it's the perfect city for a certain kind of person. I'd suggest that you actually spend a significant amount of time in the city before talking shit about it (or at least get your information from someone that's actually spent a significant amount of time in the city).

    REPORT TO MOLLOM

  • Brady Hoke's picture

    if detroit country day...detroit catholic central...cranbrook...etc...aren't good enough places for your kids to learn calculus and social skills...then we don't want you or your soon-to-be babied/overly-entitled/pussy/a-hole kid anywhere near our state.

  • In reply to SAC
    Brady Hoke's picture

    <a href="http://www.wallstreetoasis.com/company/sac-capital" rel="nofollow">SAC</a> wrote:

    The ones I know of are involved in RE and on the transportation side. I also know Bill Ford's PE/VC firm focuses on transportation technologies: http://www.fontinalispartners.com, and they also recruit at Ross.

    As far as salaries, the larger banks and consulting firms will have similar starting salaries across the board, maybe a slight haircut to NY, so we're talking $60K starting ?

    boy...i would love to work for bill ford's PE firm.

  • threatlevelmidnight's picture

    If you are interested in alternative investment firms in Detroit, go to the Cap IQ threads for hedge funds and PE and request that someone run a scan for you and post it there. Don''t hold your breath, because there is no big presence of financial firms in Detroit, and those that exist will serve a very small market. As such, the pay will not be as high as you would like.

    If finance is where your interests lie, your best bet would be to try and manage money for the parents who send their kids to those prep schools you mentioned. See if any firms have PWM offices in those burbs.

    You set yourself up for the Detroit jokes. Everyone could see the chip on your shoulder from the first sentence in your post. Also, consider the audience. What did you expect?

    I've spent the past year on a consulting gig at one of the autos in Detroit, and everyone says the same thing. "We're tough and real." No, you're angry and your city is more dangerous than most because a lot of people are jobless.

    Go to Ross see if you still want to do finance in Detroit while your peers are spending their summers in NY and Chi. If you still want to come back after a few years, then I've got nothing but respect for you.

  • Brady Hoke's picture

    a big middle market PE (and/or consulting?) firm has been brought to my attention via private message from someone that read my original post...Conway MacKenzie. anyone ever heard of them? any additional info on them would be greatly, greatly appreciated.

    i will check the cap iq threads, but i am already familiar with a number of the higher aum firms in SE michigan (as far as knowing of them) via the crain-detroit-business magazine/website. it's really just that i have no idea who's making what.

    ...and really!?...you think that i'd make more managing money for SE michigan families than i would in PE or consulting?

    also, maybe it's time for me to share some of my opinions on your cities:

    ...i've spent a great deal of time in chicago (friends, relatives there), and i've spent a couple of weeks each in new york, boston and san francisco as well. and i don't like the cultures, at all. all i see when i go to these cities is a bunch of wasteful spending. i see ugly loser executives moving around in super expensive suits, super expensive cars...and looking miserable because their wives - whom they all expected to be supermodels - are actually very, very mediocre looking gold diggers. all style, no substance. (turns out that they still prefer good-looking men that make $60,000 a year to ugly trolls that make $200,000 a year, eh?)

    ...$1,000,000 apartments as big as my garage, $50,000 rides that sit in parking garages 360 days a year, $1,000 suits and watches to wear...at work, so-so $100 meals at rip-off restaurants, $100 bar nights at clubs filled with mediocre-looking women that usually have terrible personalities...80-hour work weeks, no time for family and non-work friends (if you have any), no time for adult-rec league sports...and, of course, 'street people' wearing $100 hoodies taking breaks from their cell phone conversations to beg passers-by for money.

    i'll take my $50 hoody, my used car, my smoking hot "country" girlfriend, our $40 dinner and movie dates, my real friends, adult-hockey, basketball, baseball, golf and bowling leagues 3-4 nights a week, and DETROIT any day of the week. no offense - because i really do appreciate you helping me, and i really do appreciate that other people have their own ideas about how time and money should be spent --- but if you think that detroit is 'dangerous,' i think that you're a scared little pussy.

  • Brady Hoke's picture

    thanks frank r...some of those i knew about...some i didn't. there's one PE firm that claims to have 2 bil in management in southgate, MI...but i think that they are cross-listed in chicago as well. and pretty much anything of worth around here seems to have some michigan guys, so that's good.

    unadbro - if i don't get in...should i transfer? or would it be better to go with a BS in finance and hang onto the Michigan name?

  • In reply to Brady Hoke
    Umadbro's picture

    Brady Hoke wrote:
    if i don't get in...should i transfer? or would it be better to go with a BS in finance and hang onto the Michigan name?

    Michigan's a fine school, I wouldn't transfer purely because there would likely be nowhere better to transfer to at that point. Econ's not exactly a death knell and it might just be me, but it seems like firms tend to ignore econ majors from UM because there are so many Ross kids with the same/better credentials. I literally have a 3.9 and haven't gotten a single interview as a sophomore. Networking/my resume might be the issue, but I think it's mostly the former.
    The only way to do finance at UM is at Ross, and even then it's just a set of electives rather than a concentration. The only degrees at Ross undergrad is the BBA.

    Also, just some facts, an MD from Beringea came to Ross last month and said they already have all the interns they need for the summer, and one Partner from Valstone and one from Huron Cap, both econ grads, spoke last week. Both of them started out in IB outside of Michigan before coming back years later - this might be a more realistic path.

  • jimbrowngoU's picture

    What's with the chip on your shoulder? You need to relax man. Shitting on cities that you know nothing about because people (who may or may not know anything about Detroit) are shitting on your city doesn't help you out. If you want to make money in finance, you need to start elsewhere. That's it. End of story. You're going to have a hard time progressing through the ranks at these firms unless you plan to spend your entire life at one place, make it to partner-level.

    No one is criticizing you for your desire to stay in Detroit, it's really about your douchey attitude.

  • happypantsmcgee's picture

    Fuck you Michigan state!!!

    If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford

  • happypantsmcgee's picture

    Fuck you Michigan state!!!

    If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford

  • In reply to jimbrowngoU
    Brady Hoke's picture

    jimbrowngoU wrote:
    What's with the chip on your shoulder? You need to relax man. Shitting on cities that you know nothing about because people (who may or may not know anything about Detroit) are shitting on your city doesn't help you out. If you want to make money in finance, you need to start elsewhere. That's it. End of story. You're going to have a hard time progressing through the ranks at these firms unless you plan to spend your entire life at one place, make it to partner-level.

    No one is criticizing you for your desire to stay in Detroit, it's really about your douchey attitude.

    agree on some points. disagree on others.

    #1) I don't care who you are, or where you're from...if you're an open-minded person that isn't terrified of poor black people and you give Detroit an actual shot (...you know, actually leave your hotel room, actually walk around a bit, meet some locals and see what the city has to offer) I can almost guarantee that you'll come back. Like I said, it's probably one of the (I can't say THE, because I haven't seen them all) most laid back cities in north america...and it's got one of the best art/music scenes in north america, especially for smart 20-somethings...who basically get to run the place bc all the vets are in the burbs. Then we've also got some of the nicest suburbs for families in the country, I think Bloomfield Hills is actually like the 4th richest city in America. I just get sick of morons who've never even been here (and walking through the airport/sitting in your hotel room doesn't qualify) talking sh!t about the city. I, on the other hand, have actually spent at least a couple of weeks in NY, CHI, BOS, SF, and I have good reasons for personally not liking them, while (at least somewhat) respectfully acknowledging that other people might be into that style. I LOVE DETROIT. I. LOVE. DETROIT. If one person's read this thread, and for the first time heard an actual account of what someone who knows the city thinks about it, then my rant isn't pointless. Maybe they'll have the balls to check it out for themselves and end up loving it. Whatever though. We don't want ignorant yuppie pussies here anyways. Enjoy NYC and the complete lack of negative aspects that one enjoys there.

    Anyways, yeah, I know that I'll probably have to do at least a two-year stint in Chicago (ugh). But I'd be more than happy to find a good firm in Detroit and spend my entire career there.

  • In reply to Brady Hoke
    happypantsmcgee's picture

    Brady Hoke wrote:
    happypantsmcgee wrote:
    Fuck you Michigan state!!!

    i'm going to the UofM, moron


    I was at a bar watching the NCAA tournament (in which MSU lost further fucking my bracket) with people not beating off to pictures of Detroit...moron.

    If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford

  • Nouveau Richie's picture

    Brady, you need a major attitude adjustment. For someone claiming to come from the most chill city in North America, you sure come off as pretty fucking un-chill.

    If you look back and read this whole thread, you'll see that the majority of posts not made by you have been people giving you candid and realistic advice about opportunities in Detroit. Despite that, you belittle our cities for stupid, subjective measures like the people being "ugly" and not as "tough."

    I think my favorite part of this thread so far is when you claimed other cities were "all style, no substance" without seeing how absurdly ironic your comment was. The bottom line is that we would never have to post a thread asking where the "high paying" jobs in New York or San Francisco are.

  • In reply to Nouveau Richie
    Brady Hoke's picture

    Nouveau Richie wrote:
    Brady, you need a major attitude adjustment. For someone claiming to come from the most chill city in North America, you sure come off as pretty fucking un-chill.

    If you look back and read this whole thread, you'll see that the majority of posts not made by you have been people giving you candid and realistic advice about opportunities in Detroit. Despite that, you belittle our cities for stupid, subjective measures like the people being "ugly" and not as "tough."

    I think my favorite part of this thread so far is when you claimed other cities were "all style, no substance" without seeing how absurdly ironic your comment was. The bottom line is that we would never have to post a thread asking where the "high paying" jobs in New York or San Francisco are.

    1) thanks for the recap, doctor. i've thanked the people that have helped. i've given the morons talking shit about a place they've never been to a piece of my mind as well (this is the last time i'll apologize for - or even address - hurting your delicate feelings with some objective truth about the lifestyles a lot of you live).

    2) search the forum for "highest paying jobs in New York or San Francisco." actually, check that...search amazon.com for books with that title. then, let me know how it goes.

  • jimbrowngoU's picture

    For a senior in high school, you should really relax. Really... I'm not trying to be offensive to Detroit here, I'm just taking a step back and letting you know that you're very uptight. You referenced a girl that is your "probable future fiance" and you're 17/18 — you might want to reconsider that. What happens if you meet a smokeshow at UM that is from the Connecticut 'burbs who wants to live in NY — will you refuse a move then? It seems your desire to stay in Detroit is firmly entrenched in your girlfriend, family and friends; there's a good chance that if you get into Ross and decide to focus in finance, all of your friends will end up out outside of Detroit (because, quite frankly, few kids interested in finance from a school like UM would actually want to stay in Detroit. It's not exactly the best place to start a career in high finance), and there's a good chance any girl you may be interested in won't want to remain in Detroit either.

    I just think you need a bit of a reality check.

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